World Bulletin/News Desk
Saudi Arabia and Qatar are paying salaries to rebel forces fighting in the Syrian revolt against President Bashar al-Assad, an Arab diplomat said on Saturday.
"The payment has been going on for months and the agreement was made on April 2 by Saudi Arabia and Qatar, with logistical organisation from Turkey where some Free Syrian Army factions are based," said the source, who requested anonymity.
"The point of this is to encourage as many factions of the Syrian army to defect and to organize the FSA, control it and prevent any extremist organizations from joining it."
A spokesman for Saudi Arabia's foreign ministry said on Saturday he was not aware of reports that the kingdom was funding Syrian rebels.
The United Nations says more than 10,000 people have been killed since violence broke out after Syrian government forces began a crackdown on pro-democracy protesters over a year ago.
Syria says at least 2,600 members of its military and security forces have been killed by what it calls foreign-backed "Islamist terrorists".
Western and Arab states, meeting on April 1, called on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to adopt a peace plan brokered by special envoy Kofi Annan, withdraw his troops from Syrian cities and allow access for humanitarian aid.
They made no mention of arming the FSA but said they would "continue to work on additional appropriate measures with a view to the protection of the Syrian people".
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said her government was supplying "communications equipment that will help activists organize, evade attacks by the regime and connect to the outside world" and was "discussing with other nations how best to expand this support".
Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has met European Parliament President Martin Schulz for the first time since he won the elections in Greece.
Nearly 400,000 children had their education disrupted ias a direct result of the ongoing crisis.
- Aid package to be split between needs inside Syria and refugees in neighboring countries.
Regime warplanes attack livestock bazaar in Aleppo using "vacuum bombs."
EU foreign ministers discuss further Russia sanctions following fierce fighting in eastern Ukraine.
Shaimaa Al-Sabagh was killed last week during a protest in Cairo with her colleagues accusing the police of using brutal force.
Tribes decide to take united stance against ISIL regardless of ethnic or religious differences with Information Minister Mohamed al-Momani telling a press conference on Thursday that Sajida al-Rishawi was still in Jordan
An elementary age school child was interrogated at a French police station on suspicion of defending terrorism
Suicide bomber targets funeral, killing 12 civilians and four policeman.
Vladimir Putin said this week the Ukrainian army itself was a legion of NATO sent to geopolitically contain Russia.
Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) whose estimated 1,400 fighters include ethnic Hutu soldiers, have been at the heart of years of conflict in central Africa's Great Lakes region.
Hamas urged the EU to "translate these calls into action" - the agreement allows Israel to participate in a wie range of EU initiatives.
Outside Ebola epicentres, tourists slowly returning.
A float that was tributed to Charlie Hebdo in Germany's Rose Monday procession has been been banned by organisers.
Greek debt renegotiation "on the table", France sees mediation role between Athens and EU.